From lines to webs…

Think back to the 90s and move forward – think of the much-touted metaphor of the “Information Superhighway.” True, the “web” was an early metaphor as well, but in reality the browser – and the user – were very much thinking in linear terms. Fed to your computer through a modem connected to your phone line, then your cable connection, then to your phone line again in a much faster way. Linear.

Now think of the “network” metaphor: Facebook, blog rings, Wikipedia and other collaborative projects, wi-fi hot spots, in which the Internet connection is available not through a linear wire but a spatial sphere surrounding the central node. Have we moved into a second (and maybe even third) dimension of our understanding of the Internet?

… Okay, this thought isn’t going too far, but it’s something to ponder nonetheless.


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